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Mandan resident running for Morton County Commission

Mandan resident running for Morton County Commission

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Mandan resident Wayne Papke has announced he is running for Morton County Commission.

Papke worked for the Smith Barney financial services company, Morgan Stanley investment bank and Investment Centers of America, according to his LinkedIn page. He also worked 17 years as a farmer. He finished his career owning a branch of Investment Centers of America, which he sold in 2015 and retired.

Papke said in a statement that he has been "very vocal and visible" the last 25 years as a taxpayer advocate. He touted his work with legislators and local officials in creating property tax reform, with "several reform ideas still pending and being worked on," he said.

Papke and his wife, Christi, have lived in Mandan since 1994.

"I will work hard to insure good use of your tax dollars. With our growth, our property taxes should have been going down, instead, local governments have chosen to increase spending from 100% of the new added revenue from valuation increases over the last 10 years," Papke said. "Our revenues have virtually doubled, but not all of those increased revenues were needed but they found a way to spend the increased revenues instead of lowering our property taxes."

Three Morton County Commission seats are up for election. Commissioners Cody Schulz and Bruce Strinden both have announced they will not seek another term. Commissioner Ron Leingang has told staff he is seeking a third term, according to county spokewoman Maxine Herr.

The June primary election will determine which six candidates make the November general election, which will determine who fills the three commission seats. Other announced candidates so far are Mandan residents Raymond Morrell and Nathan Boehm.

The annual salary for a Morton County commissioner is $21,600.

Reach Andy Tsubasa Field at 701-250-8264 or andy.field@bismarcktribune.com.

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